Isabel Behncke: Evolution's gift of play, from bonobo apes to humans

TED2011

Isabel Behncke: Evolution's gift of play, from bonobo apes to humans

833,065 views

Readability: 4.8


With never-before-seen video, primatologist Isabel Behncke Izquierdo (a TED Fellow) shows how bonobo ape society learns from constantly playing -- solo, with friends, even as a prelude to sex. Indeed, play appears to be the bonobos' key to problem-solving and avoiding conflict. If it works for our close cousins, why not for us?

Hans Rosling: The magic washing machine

TEDWomen 2010

Hans Rosling: The magic washing machine

2,594,233 views

Readability: 2.9


What was the greatest invention of the industrial revolution? Hans Rosling makes the case for the washing machine. With newly designed graphics from Gapminder, Rosling shows us the magic that pops up when economic growth and electricity turn a boring wash day into an intellectual day of reading.

Sarah Kay: If I should have a daughter ...

TED2011

Sarah Kay: If I should have a daughter ...

11,490,102 views

Readability: 3.2


"If I should have a daughter, instead of Mom, she's gonna call me Point B ... " began spoken word poet Sarah Kay, in a talk that inspired two standing ovations at TED2011. She tells the story of her metamorphosis -- from a wide-eyed teenager soaking in verse at New York's Bowery Poetry Club to a teacher connecting kids with the power of self-expression through Project V.O.I.C.E. -- and gives two breathtaking performances of "B" and "Hiroshima."

Rogier van der Heide: Why light needs darkness

TEDxAmsterdam

Rogier van der Heide: Why light needs darkness

586,603 views

Readability: 3.5


Lighting architect Rogier van der Heide offers a beautiful new way to look at the world -- by paying attention to light (and to darkness). Examples from classic buildings illustrate a deeply thought-out vision of the play of light around us.

Janna Levin: The sound the universe makes

TED2011

Janna Levin: The sound the universe makes

1,205,616 views

Readability: 3.7


We think of space as a silent place. But physicist Janna Levin says the universe has a soundtrack -- a sonic composition that records some of the most dramatic events in outer space. (Black holes, for instance, bang on spacetime like a drum.) An accessible and mind-expanding soundwalk through the universe.

David Brooks: The social animal

TED2011

David Brooks: The social animal

1,185,461 views

Readability: 4.6


Columnist David Brooks unpacks new insights into human nature from the cognitive sciences -- insights with massive implications for economics and politics as well as our own self-knowledge. In a talk full of humor, he shows how you can't hope to understand humans as separate individuals making choices based on their conscious awareness.

Rob Harmon: How to keep rivers and streams flowing

TEDxRainier

Rob Harmon: How to keep rivers and streams flowing

631,110 views

Readability: 3.8


With streams and rivers drying up because of over-usage, Rob Harmon talks about a clever market mechanism to bring back the water. Farmers and beer companies find their fates intertwined in the century-old tale of Prickly Pear Creek.

Deb Roy: The birth of a word

TED2011

Deb Roy: The birth of a word

2,602,150 views

Readability: 4.2


MIT researcher Deb Roy wanted to understand how his infant son learned language -- so he wired up his house with videocameras to catch every moment (with exceptions) of his son's life, then parsed 90,000 hours of home video to watch "gaaaa" slowly turn into "water." Astonishing, data-rich research with deep implications for how we learn.

Eli Pariser: Beware online "filter bubbles"

TED2011

Eli Pariser: Beware online "filter bubbles"

4,416,264 views

Readability: 3.9


As web companies strive to tailor their services (including news and search results) to our personal tastes, there's a dangerous unintended consequence: We get trapped in a "filter bubble" and don't get exposed to information that could challenge or broaden our worldview. Eli Pariser argues powerfully that this will ultimately prove to be bad for us and bad for democracy.

Sal Khan: Let's use video to reinvent education

TED2011

Sal Khan: Let's use video to reinvent education

4,943,808 views

Readability: 3.7


Salman Khan talks about how and why he created the remarkable Khan Academy, a carefully structured series of educational videos offering complete curricula in math and, now, other subjects. He shows the power of interactive exercises, and calls for teachers to consider flipping the traditional classroom script -- give students video lectures to watch at home, and do "homework" in the classroom with the teacher available to help.

Anthony Atala: Printing a human kidney

TED2011

Anthony Atala: Printing a human kidney

2,887,705 views

Readability: 4.1


Surgeon Anthony Atala demonstrates an early-stage experiment that could someday solve the organ-donor problem: a 3D printer that uses living cells to output a transplantable kidney. Using similar technology, Dr. Atala's young patient Luke Massella received an engineered bladder 10 years ago; we meet him onstage. NOTE: This talk was given in 2011, and this field of science has developed quickly since then. Read "Criticisms & updates" below for more details.

Bill Gates: How state budgets are breaking US schools

TED2011

Bill Gates: How state budgets are breaking US schools

1,945,633 views

Readability: 3.7


America's school systems are funded by the 50 states. In this fiery talk, Bill Gates says that state budgets are riddled with accounting tricks that disguise the true cost of health care and pensions and weighted with worsening deficits -- with the financing of education at the losing end.

Wael Ghonim: Inside the Egyptian revolution

TED2011

Wael Ghonim: Inside the Egyptian revolution

970,504 views

Readability: 3.6


Wael Ghonim is the Google executive who helped jumpstart Egypt's democratic revolution ... with a Facebook page memorializing a victim of the regime's violence. Speaking at TEDxCairo, he tells the inside story of the past two months, when everyday Egyptians showed that "the power of the people is stronger than the people in power."

JR: My wish: Use art to turn the world inside out

TED2011

JR: My wish: Use art to turn the world inside out

2,800,816 views

Readability: 3.2


French street artist JR uses his camera to show the world its true face, by pasting photos of the human face across massive canvases. At TED2011, he makes his audacious TED Prize wish: to use art to turn the world inside out.

Wadah Khanfar: A historic moment in the Arab world

TED2011

Wadah Khanfar: A historic moment in the Arab world

958,179 views

Readability: 4.6


As a democratic revolution led by tech-empowered young people sweeps the Arab world, Wadah Khanfar, the head of Al Jazeera, shares a profoundly optimistic view of what's happening in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya and beyond -- at this powerful moment when people realized they could step out of their houses and ask for change.

Ahn Trio: A modern take on piano, violin, cello

TEDWomen 2010

Ahn Trio: A modern take on piano, violin, cello

795,815 views

Readability: 3.9


The three Ahn sisters (cellist Maria, pianist Lucia, violinist Angella) breathe new life into the piano trio with their passionate musicmaking. At TEDWomen, they start with the bright and poppy "Skylife," by David Balakrishnan, then play a gorgeous, slinky version of "Oblivion," by Astor Piazzolla.

Danny Hillis: Understanding cancer through proteomics

TEDMED 2010

Danny Hillis: Understanding cancer through proteomics

447,201 views

Readability: 3.6


Danny Hills makes a case for the next frontier of cancer research: proteomics, the study of proteins in the body. As Hillis explains it, genomics shows us a list of the ingredients of the body -- while proteomics shows us what those ingredients produce. Understanding what's going on in your body at the protein level may lead to a new understanding of how cancer happens.

Elizabeth Lindsey: Curating humanity's heritage

TEDWomen 2010

Elizabeth Lindsey: Curating humanity's heritage

463,039 views

Readability: 3.7


It's been said that when an elder dies, it's as if a library is burned. Anthropologist Elizabeth Lindsey, a National Geographic Fellow, collects the deep cultural knowledge passed down as stories and lore.

Iain Hutchison: Saving faces: A facial surgeon's craft

TEDGlobal 2010

Iain Hutchison: Saving faces: A facial surgeon's craft

633,936 views

Readability: 4.3


Maxillofacial surgeon Iain Hutchison works with people whose faces have been severely disfigured. By pushing to improve surgical techniques, he helps to improve their lives; and by commissioning their portraits, he celebrates their humanity. NOTE: This talk contains images of disfigured and badly injured faces that may be disturbing -- and Hutchison provides thoughtful answers as to why a disfigured face can shock us so deeply. Squeamish? Hide your screen from 12:10 - 13:19, but do keep listening. Portraits shown in this talk come from Mark Gilbert.

Noreena Hertz: How to use experts -- and when not to

TEDSalon London 2010

Noreena Hertz: How to use experts -- and when not to

906,202 views

Readability: 5.3


We make important decisions every day -- and we often rely on experts to help us decide. But, says economist Noreena Hertz, relying too much on experts can be limiting and even dangerous. She calls for us to start democratizing expertise -- to listen not only to "surgeons and CEOs, but also to shop staff."

Madeleine Albright: On being a woman and a diplomat

TEDWomen 2010

Madeleine Albright: On being a woman and a diplomat

770,966 views

Readability: 3.4


Former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright talks bluntly about politics and diplomacy, making the case that women's issues deserve a place at the center of foreign policy. Far from being a "soft" issue, she says, women's issues are often the very hardest ones, dealing directly with life and death. A frank and funny Q&A with Pat Mitchell from the Paley Center.

Lisa Gansky: The future of business is the "mesh"

TED@MotorCity

Lisa Gansky: The future of business is the "mesh"

736,487 views

Readability: 4


Lisa Gansky, author of "The Mesh," talks about a future of business that's about sharing all kinds of stuff, either via smart and tech-enabled rental or, more boldly, peer-to-peer. Examples across industries -- from music to cars -- show how close we are to this meshy future.

Jacqueline Novogratz: Inspiring a life of immersion

TEDWomen 2010

Jacqueline Novogratz: Inspiring a life of immersion

925,385 views

Readability: 4.2


We each want to live a life of purpose, but where to start? In this luminous, wide-ranging talk, Jacqueline Novogratz introduces us to people she's met in her work in "patient capital" -- people who have immersed themselves in a cause, a community, a passion for justice. These human stories carry powerful moments of inspiration.

Patricia Kuhl: The linguistic genius of babies

TEDxRainier

Patricia Kuhl: The linguistic genius of babies

2,945,851 views

Readability: 4.2


Patricia Kuhl shares astonishing findings about how babies learn one language over another -- by listening to the humans around them and "taking statistics" on the sounds they need to know. Clever lab experiments (and brain scans) show how 6-month-old babies use sophisticated reasoning to understand their world.

Krista Tippett: Reconnecting with compassion

TEDPrize@UN

Krista Tippett: Reconnecting with compassion

743,728 views

Readability: 5


The term "compassion" -- typically reserved for the saintly or the sappy -- has fallen out of touch with reality. At a special TEDPrize@UN, journalist Krista Tippett deconstructs the meaning of compassion through several moving stories, and proposes a new, more attainable definition for the word.

Michael Pawlyn: Using nature's genius in architecture

TEDSalon London 2010

Michael Pawlyn: Using nature's genius in architecture

1,853,188 views

Readability: 4.9


How can architects build a new world of sustainable beauty? By learning from nature. Michael Pawlyn describes three habits of nature that could transform architecture and society: radical resource efficiency, closed loops, and drawing energy from the sun.